My father, Claude A. Williams Jr., was an insurance salesman. He was well-schooled in positive thinking and practiced what he learned. I remember him listening to Napoleon Hill records on the small record player in his bedroom. He once took me to a positive thinking conference where we heard the top speakers of the day, including one of my “heroes” Zig Ziglar.
Yes, you could say that I also “drank the Kool-Aid.” But by that I don’t mean I was suckered into the excesses of some who took positive thinking too far. Or those who made it all about money. And neither did my father. He was all about helping people, especially the down-trodden he met and tried to help.
Leaving aside the excesses, I believe, as a pastor, missionary and Bible teacher, that Christians should be some of the most positive thinking people in the world.
Here are 7 reasons Christianity provides the ultimate in positive thinking:
#1. Christians believe in being thankful no matter what happens.
This is one teaching that the Bible is quite clear about:
- 1 Thessalonians 5:18 says “Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus.” (NLT)
- Ephesians 5:20 says, “And give thanks for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.” (NLT)
Of course, this doesn’t mean that Christians are thankful for:
- And other tragedies
Instead, it means that Christians quickly begin to find reasons to be thankful no matter what happens. Rather than “going negative” Christians grieve appropriately, and at the same time find pockets of praise that can begin to put joy back into living.
#2. Christians find life extra meaningful overall.
While many people find some kind of meaning in life, often that meaning is frankly quite superficial. I know some might think me judgmental, but if so, please look at this article where I examined some people’s trivial purposes in living: What is the Meaning of Life?
What meaning do Christians find? They find that life is lived to glorify the eternal and majestic God who created and rules the universe! There is no one higher.
Furthermore, Christians believe that we have a mandate to share the Good News of salvation through Jesus with the entire world and that the eternal destiny of every individual rests on their response to the Gospel.
Whether someone agrees with the Gospel or not, they have to admit that by definition, our mission is meaningful! This mission makes Christians more positive thinking about life!
#3. Christians look forward to a promised eternal reward.
As Christians, we don’t just have some vague hope that when a loved one dies, “They’re in a better place.” We have a positive assurance of that for our loved ones who know Jesus, and for ourselves!
Jesus made the promise in John 14:1-4;
“Don’t let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God, and trust also in me. 2 There is more than enough room in my Father’s home. If this were not so, would I have told you that I am going to prepare a place for you? 3 When everything is ready, I will come and get you, so that you will always be with me where I am. 4 And you know the way to where I am going.” (NLT)
Here Jesus said that we can have great assurance of heaven which wipes away all fear of death and eternity. And when asked how to have that kind of assurance this is how the conversation transpired:
5 “No, we don’t know, Lord,” Thomas said. “We have no idea where you are going, so how can we know the way?”
6 Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me.” (John 14:5-6 NLT)
Jesus is that way to heaven! Learn about how to be headed for heaven HERE.
#4. Christians know that things will work out in the end.
Many people think that everything happens for a purpose, but they have no promise of it—it’s just a “hope in hope.” But that’s not a good foundation to build life on! In fact, it is no foundation—it’s just wishful thinking.
But as Christians, we have the promise of Romans 8:28, “And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.” (NLT)
For the Christian, we have God’s promise that everything that happens eventually works “for the good.” How incredibly positive is that?!
#5. Christians believe that our weaknesses are actually strengths.
Amazingly enough, the Apostle Paul wrote quite clearly that our dreaded weaknesses are actually strengths when Christ is working through us. He wrote about a weakness he called a “thorn in the flesh.” Although we don’t know what that thorn was, we do know this great lesson the Apostle wrote:
Three different times I begged the Lord to take it away. 9 Each time he said, “My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.’ So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me. 10 That’s why I take pleasure in my weaknesses, and in the insults, hardships, persecutions, and troubles that I suffer for Christ. For when I am weak, then I am strong. (2 Corinthians 12:8-10 NLT)
Let that passage soak into your psyche. It can help us turn confidence depleting situations into confidence building situations. What could be better than that? This fact has helped me turn my negative attitude to positive thinking over and over!
#6. Christians love everyone, even those who hurt us.
Jesus said to his followers, “You have heard the law that says, ‘Love your neighbor’ and hate your enemy. But I say, love your enemies!” (Matthew 5:43-44 NLT)
There is perhaps no more vivid example of taking a negative and turning it into a positive. People all around the world are mired in resentment and bitterness. But the obedient Christian gets beyond all that by obeying Jesus’s command to forgive.
#7. Christians believe that God has a purpose in our problems.
Amazingly enough, this is what Christians are told about problems:
“Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. 3 For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. 4 So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing.” (James 1:2-4 NLT)
I don’t mean to suggest that all Christians do this all the time. But if we do, we’ll be some of the most positive people in the world as we consider troubles “an opportunity for great joy!”
Well, there you have it my friend: 7 reasons why Christianity provides the ultimate in positive thinking. What do you think—did I get something wrong, or miss some reasons? I’d love to hear your feedback.
Your thoughts are welcome! Please leave your comment below.
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Additional resources about related subjects on this site:
- Faith Means Acting When You Feel Inadequate
- You Can Do It!
- How to Tackle a Mountain-Sized Goal in Faith
- How Reluctant Leaders Become Confident Achievers for God
- 4 Characteristics in the Attitude of a Winner, Part 1
- 7 Biblical Christian Mantras I Find Helpful
- How Biblical Thought Replacement Creates Time and Energy
- How to Balance Content and Discontent in the Christian Life
- My Free Inspirational Quote Cards http://www.markalanwilliams.net/quote-cards-gallery/